Lone Star Brahmas - Rio Grande Killer Bees Preview

 

The Lone Star Brahmas will travel to Hidalgo, TX to face the Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees on Saturday evening. In a scheduling quirk that will catch the Brahmas a couple of times this season they will be in the bus for more than 1,100 miles roundtrip for a single game. This will be the fifth meeting of the NAHL season for these two teams. Lone Star took game one and lost game two in overtime. Last weekend the Brahmas lost a pair of 4 – 2 games to the Killer Bees to drop their season record to 2 – 9 – 1

 

Last Friday, the teams skated to a scoreless tie through the first period. In the second period Rio Grande sandwiched goals around a Matt Lison tally for a 2 – 1 lead going into the second intermission. The Killer Bees scored early in the third to take a two goal lead before Liam Stirtzinger brought the Brahmas back to within a goal with just over five minutes to play. Unfortunately, Rio Grande would respond just 19 seconds later for the 4 – 2 win. Sean Keating made 40 saves in the loss.

 

In game two on Saturday, the Killer Bees took a 1 – 0 lead into the first intermission. Anthony Mousseau got the Brahmas on the board with a power play goal at 14:48 of the second, only to be answered by Rio Grande with a power play goal of their own. Midway through the third the Killer Bees netted another power play goal to take a two goal lead, but the Brahmas refused to roll over with Ryan Watson pulling them back within a single goal. The Brahmas pulled Jacob Nehama for the extra attacker down the stretch, but a late penalty negated the man advantage. Rio Grande scored an empty net power play goal with just 24 seconds to go.

 

Coach Wildfong reflected on the Brahmas performance during the KATX Brahma Talk Radio Show. “I thought honestly the first game we made steps to get better” said Wildfong. “We are going through some growing pains right now. We are learning how to be a team and learning how to win in the league, and it is not easy.” Wildfong is seeing some improvements. “It’s not like we are getting blown out. We are not that far off, but we are not there yet.”

Last 5 Games   W   L   OTL   Pts
Brahmas

1

4

0

2

Killer Bees

4

0

1

9

 

Special Teams

 

The Brahmas have been slowly moving up the league rankings with the power play and now set at number 19. In 41 opportunities this season they have 5 power play goals for 12.2%. Against the Killer Bees however, they are just 1 of 12 or 8.3%.

 

Rio Grande has the 16th ranked power play so far this season converting 7 of 54 opportunities for 13.0%. The Killer Bees have been much better against the Brahmas this season at 25.0% on 4 goals in 16 opportunities.

 

The Brahmas penalty kill has played better overall than the numbers seem to indicate. For the season they are ranked 23rd in the league surrendering 15 goals on 62 times short handed. However, 8 of the power play goals allowed have come in two games. Without those two games, the Brahmas would be at 85.7% on the penalty kill, good enough for 12th in the league.

 

Rio Grande currently has the 9th best penalty kill in the league at 88.9%. They have allowed 6 power play goals on 54 penalty kills.

 

Goaltending Comparison Last 5 Games

 

GP

W

L

OTL

SO

GA

GAA

SV

SV%

Brahmas

5

1

4

0

0

19

3.80

185

.907

Killer Bees

5

4

0

1

0

10

2.00

103

.912

 

Who is Hot (Last 5 Games)

 

 

Brahmas

G

A

Pts

Anthony Mousseau

1

4

5

Ryan Watson

4

0

4

Paul Fregeau

2

2

4

AJ Duggan

2

1

3

Two Tied

0

3

3

 
Killer Bees

 G

A

Pts

Tyler Bruneteau

5

2

7

Ben Greiner

0

6

6

Evan Schmidbauer

2

2

4

Anthony Croston

2

2

4

Nathan Flynn

3

0

3

Inside the Game

 

Anthony Mousseau is fourth in the league in Defenseman scoring with 2G – 8A for 10 points.

 

Killer Bees forward Ben Greiner is currently third in the league in scoring at 13 points on 4G – 9A.

 

Matt Lison has 3G – 1A against the Killer Bees in four games played while AJ Duggan has 2G – 2A also in four games played.

 

Tyler Bruneteau has 4 of Rio Grande’s 7 power play goals and is tied for the league.

 

Rio Grande goal tender Olli Kalkaja is tenth in the league with a 1.94GAA and second in the league with 269 saves and tied for first with 7 wins.

 

The Brahmas have dropped to third in the league in penalty minutes averaging 23.58 minutes per game while Rio Grande is 17th 16.93 minutes per game.

 

Saturday night will mark Lone Star’s 11th straight road game. The Brahmas have not played on their home ice since the opening weekend of the season.

 

Roster Moves Since Last Meeting

Both teams made a single move since last weekend. Rio Grande released Defenseman Sven Jung. Jung had played in six games with the Killer Bees this season with no points. The Brahmas released North Richland Hills native Connor Hutchins. Hutchins, a Forward, had played in 11 games with no points scored. The Brahmas also released Goalie Mattias Soderqvist. Soderqvist had a 1 – 3 – 0 record with a 4.03GAA.

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Tags: Lone Star Brahmas NAHL Rio Grande Killer Bees

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